Peter Greste has urged the Australians who wrote letters to him in prison to show the same support to his colleagues who remain behind bars, Mohammed Fahmy and Baher Mohamed.
Greste told a gathering of some of those letter writers in Sydney on Friday night the compassion in their letters became his reason to get up in the morning, but they were also pivotal in the pressure that got the Al Jazeera journalist released from an Egyptian prison.
He said it was the "shove from below" that had prompted world leaders to act.
"We got a lot of political support, statements from the White House, from Julie Bishop, from the British Foreign Office, from Ban Ki Moon. The reason these people spoke publicly... was because they knew the public cared. It was a really rare moment, where political support welled up from the bottom up," he said.
#FreeAJStaff has recorded 3 billion impressions. Thousands of letters were meanwhile sent to Greste, after he complained to his brother of only having received three, and of feeling isolated.
Greste said he had this week asked the families of Fahmy and Mohamed to set up email accounts to replicate the system that had allowed emails of support to be printed out and taken to him in prison.
The accounts are now live at firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com.
When the first batch of letters had arrived, Greste said he was staggered.
The prison authorities, who had to scan the letters, were forced to read the messages of ordinary, widespread support.
Tasmanian mothers wrote about what they planned to bake that day, men kept him updated on the footy, school girls wrote about pop bands.
At one point the authorities got sick of the volume of correspondence, so limited Greste to three a month.
His family responded by editing the emails into 16-page long compilations, technically one letter.
Canberra digital publisher Charlotte Harper came up with the idea of publishing the letters in a digital book while Greste was still in prison, to raise money for his family to continue their campaign.
Greste was in Sydney to meet a dozen of the letter writers at Prison Post's hardcopy launch. They included Northern Beaches school girl Pippa Pryor, Queensland mother Paige Garland, comedian and writer Wendy Harmer, and publisher Richard Walsh.
Greste said the letters were "extraordinary - the way they conveyed the beauty in the mundane. Just how special the little things are in your life".
Prison Post is published by editia.com, with proceeds donated to the Foreign Prisoner Support Service.